A key homemade anti-tank guided missile has completed user trials with the armed forces in the western desert and is ready for induction. The missile called Helina in army service and Dhruvastra in the air force can take out moving or stationary tanks, armoured personnel carriers and other targets.
The anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) is fired from attack helicopters or from special carriers on land. The armed forces have been looking for a modern ATGM, a role that this system has fulfilled now.
"A mission was carried out against a moving target from a forward flying helicopter," the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) said in a statement.
Five missions were carried out for evaluating the missile's capabilities in minimum and maximum range, the DRDO said, adding some missions were carried out with warheads against derelict tanks.
Helina is a third-generation, lock-on before launch fire-and-forget ATGM that can engage targets both in direct-hit as well as top-attack modes - meaning the missile can lock into a target and once launched, no more user guidance is needed, giving ample time for the user to move away from the area. The top-attack mode enables the Helina to hit tanks and other armoured targets on their roof, where the armour is the thinnest.
Helina Trial Video pic.twitter.com/06kHn21XNE— DRDO (@DRDO_India) February 19, 2021
"The system has all-weather day and night capability and can defeat battle tanks with conventional armour as well as with explosive reactive armour," the DRDO said.
The missiles were fired in hover and maximum forward flight against realistic static and moving targets. Some missions were carried out with warheads against derelict tanks.
"Indigenously developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation, it is one of the most advanced anti-tank weapons in the world. Now the missile systems are ready for induction," the DRDO said.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated the DRDO, the Indian Army and the Indian Air Force for the successful user trial of the ATGM. DRDO chairman G Satheesh Reddy thanked the teams involved in the successful trials.